Eight killed, 126 injured in clashes in Kashmir; Amarnath yatra suspended


Eight people were killed and 126, including 96 security forces personnel, were injured today as mob violence and clashes rocked Kashmir to protest the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen poster boy Burhan Wani in an encounter.

Curfew-like restrictions were imposed in many parts of Kashmir where mobile internet services were suspended across the valley and mobile telephony services restricted in south Kashmir, the epicentre of the trouble.

In view of the volatile situation, Amarnath yatra has also been suspended from Jammu base camp with no fresh pilgrims allowed to proceed towards the Valley today.

Burhan’s funeral in Tral town was attended by thousands of people while violent protests were reported from a number of places from Khadinyar in north Kashmir to Kulgam in south, a day after the militant commander was killed.

A 25-year-old youth, Amir Bashir, was hit by a bullet allegedly fired by security forces on protestors in Verinag area of Anantnag district in south Kashmir, a police official said.

The youth was shifted to a hospital but he succumbed to injuries on the way, he said.

Another youth was reportedly killed in similar circumstances in Qaimoh area late last night. Zubair Ahmad had multiple bullet injuries in his chest, a doctor at the Anantnag district hospital said on condition of anonymity.

A 16-year-old youth identified as Saqib Manzoor was declared “brought dead” by doctors at SMHS hospital where he was taken by some people with critical injuries sustained due to use of firearms, a police official said.

Besides these three deaths, there were unconfirmed reports that a youth drowned in a river at Ganeshpora as security forces chased a group of protestors. Police did not confirm the incident.

Police said over 30 other youth were injured in action by the security forces against the violent mobs at several places across the valley. However, sources in various hospitals of the city put the number of injured persons at around 50.

Condition of the two of the injured was stated to be critical.

The protestors indulged in widespread violence and arson.

They attacked police posts at several places and also damaged the office of the BJP in Kulgam area, police said.

The mobs set on fire police stations at Achabal and Damhal Hanjipora while a police post at Kund in Qazigung was also set ablaze.

Two government offices were set on fire by protestors in Tral town of Pulwama district as well while three buses were also set on fire at Qazigund. .